Friday night lights this past Halloween weekend featured two of the scariest high school football teams in the Central Coast Section. Long-time rivals Wilcox and Los Gatos—arguably the two most fearsome public schools in the region—locked facemasks for their annual battle. As is most often the case, the game more than lived up to the hype.
Los Gatos opened the scoring with a pair of touchdowns, taking a 14-0 lead in the first quarter. The Chargers then stormed back with two straight scores of their own, including a two-minute drill to perfection just before halftime. A fade to wide receiver Will Ruff in the corner of the endzone knotted the score at 14-14 going into the break.
“Definitely a fun game from a receiver standpoint,” chimed Ruff on reeling in five catches for 53 yards and a touchdown. “Tyson [Bonilla] and I have been working together for a long time now to make sure we are always on the same page.”
Bonilla, from his quarterback position, as well as tailbacks Elijah Walker and Jamontay Amataga, led the Chargers’ traditionally dominant run game in this one. Walker toted the rock 18 times for 84 yards and a touchdown, Bonilla carried 14 times for 94 yards, and Amataga added 29 yards with a touchdown.
Wilcox moved the ball well throughout the game, but two costly mistakes eventually proved too much to overcome. The Chargers would take a brief 21-17 lead in the second half, but a fumble on offense and a blocked punt that was scooped up for a touchdown by Los Gatos helped the Wildcats come away with a 24-21 win.
The offensive star for the Wildcats was tailback Boxer Kopcsak-Yeung, who rushed for 115 yards on 15 carries, a 7.8 yards-per-carry average, and two touchdowns.
“I wouldn’t place the blame on our defense,” added Ruff after the game. “On offense, there were definitely missed opportunities, including myself. I missed a couple key blocks that would have sprung run plays for key gains. It definitely adds up and makes a difference in the game.”
One of the difference makers on defense in a positive way for the Chargers was linebacker Brayden Rosa. The junior finished second on the team in tackles with 10, including two tackles for a loss and the lone sack of the game by the Wilcox defense.
“Brayden is a dog,” praised Ruff. “He’s been on varsity since his sophomore year. We love playing with him. He’s a great leader on defense; he makes such an impact for us.”
Rosa, himself, deflected credit to his interior lineman playing in front of him.
“The two guys in front of me are really the reason I do what I do, Romeo Castillo and Lotrail Riggs.” praised the humble Rosa. “Romeo got hurt. He’s our best defensive tackle and I think they took advantage of his absence after he went down.”
Head Coach Paul Rosa and his squad will now look to get healthy as they finish off the season with one more game against cross-town rival Santa Clara this Friday, Nov. 3 before heading to the CCS playoffs.